Tamworth school receives award for excellent practice

A popular Tamworth primary school is celebrating “excellent practice” after receiving a professional award – accredited by Staffordshire Council – for its commitment to supporting vulnerable children.

William MacGregor headteacher Suzie Norton celebrates award success with pupils and teacher Zoe Franks (right).

William MacGregor School, part of the respected Arthur Terry Learning Partnership (ATLP), has achieved ‘The Attachment and Trauma Sensitive Schools Award’ (ATSSA) from the Staffordshire Virtual School for Looked After and Previously Looked After Children. 

The award is part of a rigorous training programme designed to help educators support the educational and emotional needs of children and young people who have experienced adversity, and help them reach their full learning potential. 

Teacher Zoe Franks, who also leads on Special Education Needs and Disability (SEND), Inclusion and Emotion coaching at William MacGregor, completed training and gathered evidence to achieve the award.

She said: “We’re delighted to receive this award. At William MacGregor School, helping children to achieve their best is at the heart of all we do. We want our pupils to be happy and nurtured and we are dedicated to creating a culture of inclusivity, where every child can excel.”

William MacGregor School, which is part of the respected Arthur Terry Learning Partnership (ATLP) will now be part of a network of professionals that work together to support children and young people and share best practice in this field.

Ms Franks added: “We know that supporting pupils’ emotional needs and development leads to better outcomes for all learners. By extending opportunities and removing any barriers to education we can give children that opportunity to thrive.

“This programme has given us the right strategies and resources to be able to support our learning communities and hopefully make a positive difference to the lives of every child.”

Staffordshire Virtual School would like to support ‘every education setting in the county to become “Trauma Informed” and “Attachment Aware.

Jonathan Price, Staffordshire County Council’s Cabinet member for Education (and SEND), said: Most children thrive in their life, making the most of opportunities in education and make good relationships and we know that children who have had secure attachment relationships are more likely to achieve academically.

“At the same time there is a significant minority of children who have experienced abuse, neglect and trauma which affects their ability to learn in the classroom – either practically, or emotionally.

The ‘Trauma Informed’ award is perfect for helping schools understand some of the hidden complexities in a number of their pupils and helps them find ways to engage and succeed.

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